Local vs. Mass produced food- Which is better and why?

During a previous meetup we discusses the advantages and disadvantages of city vs. rural living. Stemming from that conversation I would like to discuss the impact, pros and cons of mass produced food vs locally grown food. On some level I believe this is a quantity vs. quality argument an which you feel is best will be based on which of those features you think is most important. Many scholars, economists, and environmentalists have weighed in on this issue and their opinions and data vary just as much as I am sure ours will. For instance, if you ask if local food is greener it has been shown that growing locally is not (use of a lot more land to produce much less product), however that the food purchased from local foods is (no pesticides) (http://www.worldwatch.org/node/6064). During this meetup I hope we can discuss the following issues:

1) How does considerations of our health impact our views on locally developed or grown products vs mass produced?

2) Should we be promoting locally grown, harvested goods or put our energies into more mass produced good to help sustain an ever growing, hungry population?

3) Which is better for our environment in the long run?

Of course there are many other issues surrounding this topic we can discuss as well. Below are some links that discuss and highlight some of these issues that would be worth reading to before this discussion. Please feel free to post other resources on this as well, I am new to this area!

Freakonomics: The inefficiency of local food- http://www.freakonomics.com/2011/11/14/the-inefficiency-of-local-food/

http://www.worldwatch.org/node/6064

http://www.skepticblog.org/2009/05/28/the-fallacy-of-locally-grown-produce/

http://www.marketplace.org/topics/sustainability/food-and-drink/argument-against-locavorism

http://www.takepart.com/article/2012/01/25/bill-gates-accept-gmos-or-let-millions-starve-0

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  • Jean S.

    Most astounding to me was Katie divulging that a $1.00 McDonald mini-burger has 390 calories. Vs. $1.00 for a nutritional apple with only 80 calories. In the marketplace, does the number of calories equate with the amount of nutrition? Today's discussion certainly shed a great deal of light on a multitude of aspects of feeding people around the world. I would certainly suggest asking the vendors in the Reading Terminal, Trader Joe's, etc. where they get their produce? Local may not be local at all. Good discussion Katie.

    October 20, 2013

  • Jean S.

    Good topic, Katie. There should be some excellent ideas expressed in the discussion. This certainly takes into consideration the group think that the number of people worldwide should be limited in total number.

    October 19, 2013

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Rafaël

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